Train reservations-Perth to Melbourne

Sep 14th, 2008, 08:50 AM
  #1  
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Train reservations-Perth to Melbourne

We plan to take the Indian Pacific train from Perth to Adelaide and then on to Melbourne somewhere around end of January / beginning of February 09. How important is it to book the Indian -Pacific train (traveling Red Service-Day/night seat) far in advance? I would like to keep our plan flexible in case we want to stay in WA longer. Does it usually fill up this time of year? Also, any must do's in Adelaide, Melbourne or Tasmania? ( We like to hike, bike, beaches/water sports, enjoy history and animals.) Also, haven't researched much about how to get to Tasmania from Melbourne, but the ferry sounds fun for one way. We plan to rent a camper and travel around Tasmania for about 3 weeks. Anyone had any experiences to share? Thanks for any insight.
caroljayne is offline  
Sep 14th, 2008, 05:05 PM
  #2  
 
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Hi caroljayne -

I live in WA, but I'm a recent transplant, so can't help with many of your questions.

I've been to Tasmania twice, both times we flew from Melbourne to Hobart via JetStar (about 45 minutes). You can arrive in Hobart and depart from Launceston or vice versa. The ferry takes a lot longer, but if you have three weeks, time probably isn't an issue.

While in Melbourne, we drove the GOR - spending three nights near Apollo Bay and taking day trips from there.

If you like to hike, you'll love TAS - loads of walking tracks. You'll want to spend some time in Cradle Mountain for sure.

There's quite a bit of info on TAS here, and we have at least one Fodorite who lives there (LizzyF).

Suggest you start separate threads for each area you want to visit - you'll probably receive more response that way.

Good luck with your travel plans.
Melnq8 is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 02:31 AM
  #3  
 
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Hi there,

Sorry can't help with train Perth-Mlb, though suspect you won't have too much trouble with a day/night seat especially if you travel after the end of the school holidays.

http://www.australia.gov.au/School_Term_Dates

Re "The Spirit of Tasmania". If you like ships then it's no-brainer, especially as there are so few opportunities now to travel that way. I loved it. BUT my return journey was taken in the days when there was no VirginBlue and no Jetstar!! Now you have that option and if you book well in advance it will be cheaper, even factoring in cost of getting to and from airport. But then you are tied to that departure date!!

Pros and cons (smile!)

How about ferry there, pick up hired camper; tour Tassie, and fly onwards from Hobart or Launceston. If one way hire is prohibitive there is probably a bus service from Devonport to Launceston. Just a thought.

It sounds as if you are travelling budget-style so my big recommendation would be to join the YHA when you first arrive (if you are not already members). My 2007 handbook quotes a possible discount of 30% on the Indian Pacific. You will probably get 10% on the Spirit too, and cheaper rates if you are planning on staying in hostels. Well worth it, imho.

There are other organisations (Nomads, VIP) that offer discounts too, but I prefer YHA.

I'll stop there, except to say it would be good to do some research on Adelaide, MLB, and Tassie, and, armed with some ideas, ask as many question as you like!

Happy planning.
afterall is offline  
Sep 27th, 2008, 08:48 AM
  #4  
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Join Date: Sep 2008
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thanks for the great info. I didn't know or think of the school holidays. This is great! Yes, we joined HIUSA which is an international hostel/backpacking org. and that qualifies us for the reduced fares on the Indian Pacific Railway. I don't know about the Ferry rates yet. I believe we will ferry over and fly back. Best of both worlds. Also thanks for the suggestion to develop different threads for specific/areas and questions.
caroljayne is offline  
Oct 13th, 2008, 04:43 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2004
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ttt
Tempusfugit is offline  
Oct 13th, 2008, 08:38 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
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I'd contact http://www.gsr.com.au/our-trains/ind...he-journey.php re how far ahead they suggest booking and though you are thinking of going all the way through to Sydney, have you thought of stopping at Adelaide and then tour to Melbourne via the coast/grampians/GOR and even take the ferry Queenscliff to Sorrento for last bit via Mornington Peninsula.
Adelaide - Wineries in Adelaide Hills extending down Fluerieu Peninsula, http://www.tourkangarooisland.com.au/ and
Victor Harbour
Melbourne - Botanical Gardens and many more - http://www.parkweb.vic.gov.au/ , the city itself, Dandenong ranges, Phillip Island for fairy penguins, Koalas and Wilsons Promontary for some great walks and more wildlife, there being companies like www.waywardbus.com.au , http://www.bunyiptours.com/ and http://www.wildlifetours.com.au/ that offer alternatives to city to city travel and also for day tours to places that may interest you.

Tasmania - http://www.parks.tas.gov.au/?base=1315 to get you on the planning way.
Bushranger is offline  
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